Green Bay Packers star Veryl Switzer passed away on Saturday at the age of 89.
Switzer was known as the first black player drafted in the first round by the Packers, who also served as athletic director at his alma mater Kansas State.
— Kevin Lockett (@klock81) June 5, 2022
His NFL impact
“To this day, Switzer is the highest drafted player in Kansas State history,” the Packers website noted.
“He also led the NFL in punt returns with a 12.8 average, including what was then a club record 93-yard touchdown against the Bears,” during the 1954-55 season.
His impact lasted many more years at Kansas State after his NFL days.
Serving in Kansas
“A K-State giant has just passed. Veryl Switzer opened so many doors for so many multicultural students,” the K-State Family account wrote.
A K-State giant has just passed. Veryl Switzer opened so many doors for so many multicultural students. So many of us stand on his shoulders and his impact is still being felt today. Our sincere condolences to the entire Switzer family. His legacy will continue to live on. 😿🙏 pic.twitter.com/ylFG58z8kd
— The K-State Family (@thekstatefamily) June 5, 2022
“So many of us stand on his shoulders and his impact is still being felt today. Our sincere condolences to the entire Switzer family. His legacy will continue to live on,” it added.
Switzer also had a strong role outside of football. He founded the Kansas Black Farmers Association to support black farmers in his state.
R.I.P. Veryl Switzer, Sr. He was a halfback in the NFL who played for the Green Bay Packers, an administrator at his alma mater K-State where he is a hall of famer, an avid farmer, & groundbreaker in Nicodemus, KS where he founded the Kansas Black Farmers Association. pic.twitter.com/8wK7KROv6U
— Gail Finney (@RepFinney) June 6, 2022
His long-lasting impact in football and beyond gave opportunities to many that will be remembered for years to come.